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Columbus, Ohio Advances Policy-Making with Legislative Automation

by Shezronne Zaccardi, IT Specialist, City of Columbus, OH

In 2002, the City of Columbus, Ohio, knew it was time for a change. We needed to move our workflows into the digital age to eliminate bottlenecks and speed up the delivery of information across our organization and to our citizens. Since implementing Granicus’ Legislative Management Suite, powered by Legistar, we’ve been able to automate our legislative process and save $2.4 million. I wanted to share our success story to help other organizations make their policy-making operations more efficient and transparent.

Manual and Paper-Heavy Legislative Workflows

We were spending several days hand-typing ordinances, manually gathering approvals, printing, copying, and distributing materials prior to our public meetings. Not to mention, we move thousands of ordinances through the legislative process every year – managing and tracking these was entirely manual.

Angie Belvins, City Clerk for the City of Columbus really championed our move to a digital environment from the start. The Clerk’s Office then partnered with our IT Department to make it a reality. I asked her to recall some of the factors that drove the city towards legislative automation. She said that the manual effort and extensive paper-work involved legislative process was extremely time consuming. She also added, “Twenty-one city departments are scattered out all over in different buildings so legislation drafters had to walk the legislation from building to building through the approval process before delivering to the City Clerk’s office for consideration by Council.” Walking legislation drafts around was hardly a good use of everyone’s time, plus, the re-typing and manual printing prolonged the process even more.

We reached a turning point where we either automated things or continue to spend millions on our inefficiencies…click here to read more.

Read more on the Granicus Blog

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